first published on January 4, 2019 by Josh
When civilians attend boot camp aboard MCRD San Diego or MCRD Paris Island, they are minted into brand new United States Marines. The new Marines are sent home on leave post boot-camp for 10 days before they respond to their follow on orders to the Infantry Training Battalions, either in the 52 Area of Camp Pendleton, California, or Camp Geiger in North Carolina. Marines who are not going to fill an infantry position enter Marine Combat Training (MCT), where they learn the basic fundamentals of being a rifleman before continuing on once again to their MOS school. Marines who are slotted to fill an infantry position in the Marine Corps attend the School of Infantry, where they learn the fundamental building blocks of Infantry Operations before going on to their unit.
Over the course of 12 weeks, Marines who attend the School of Infantry will be with seasoned Combat Instructors every single day. These Combat Instructors, who are often some of the most skilled infantrymen in the United States Marine Corps, come with years of operational experience to spread their knowledge, and build young infantrymen into skilled basically trained riflemen, machine gunners, mortar men, anti-tank missile men, and assault-men.
In order to do this effectively, hours upon hours of classroom time are required. These instructors utilize formal periods of instruction combined with classroom practical application to build the fundamental muscle memory required in each young infantryman. Once each student has met the standard in the classroom, the instructors then take the students out into the field where the practical application continues and the Marines are asked to prove their new-found skill sets under the direct supervision of their Combat Instructors. Failure to meet the standards set by the United States Marine Corps will often result in remedial training, or even being held back to re-take the entire course with the next group of students.
Below is a 30 minute video that breaks down what happens at the School of Infantry. It was compiled together from footage recorded at the School of Infantry, and shows the Combat Instructors and students during their average day at the School of Infantry. This is how the United States Marine Corps teaches the art of war.